You deserve to be treated fairly. Whether you are the parent paying child support or the parent receiving child support, you deserve to be treated fairly. Establishing the proper levels for child support can be an essential element of crafting a divorce agreement or Order. Setting the obligation too high may mean that the party required to pay it may eventually default. Setting the obligation too low may mean that the child’s needs cannot be fully met.
Successfully balancing the various competing factors is necessary for the creation of an appropriate child support obligation.
We are skilled at helping create child support levels that are functional. With three decades of experience, we are able to help the Court see what will work. Attorney Flanagan is a former Navy JAG officer who taught family law at the Naval Justice School and was adjunct professor at Salve Regina University in Newport, Rhode Island.
Correct Evaluation of Income for Child Support Purposes
In Rhode Island, child support is determined using the mathematical formula that is found in the Rhode Island Child Support State Guidelines. Those Guidelines look primarily at the gross income of both parties. Another factor that may be considered by the Court are costs directly related to the raising of the child including health care costs, day care costs and any extraordinary expenses. Extraordinary expenses may include out of the ordinary health care or educational needs, for example.
Our key responsibility to our clients with regard to child support is the proper characterization of income. In many cases, this is not too complicated given the availability of tax records. For business owners, freelancers, contractors and other types of income earners with more diverse income streams, our experience can mean the difference between an appropriate child support obligation and one that cannot be met or falls short for the child.